For all you serious duck people

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by bayyjayy, Jul 12, 2011.

  1. bayyjayy

    bayyjayy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So....where do I begin? Not even sure how to put into words what I am wanting to know. I am forcing myself not to do anything until spring, because I don't want to go into this on a whim. I am TOTALLY addicted to these ducks. I am obsessed for some reason. I want more, more, more, more, more, more, MORE ducks. I am forcing myself to wait until spring to even order any more ducklings. I want some Welsh Harlequinns, Magpies, Anconas, and Buffs. I already have ducks, my hubby keeps asking me what the heck I am doing! [​IMG] I even want to get some eggs and try my hand at THAT! The thought of that kinda overwhelms me, but again, waiting till spring so I don't just get caught up in the moment.

    Okay....on to my questions: When you get babies, and you get more males than you want, what the heck do you do with them? I am not a disposable pet owner, when I get any pet, I am in it for their life, even if they drive me nuts. So, this has been a huge factor for me in getting more ducks. Do you sell them? Eat them? How in the world can you eat a duck, especially if you get them as babies and have them for sometimes months before you figure out what they are? What about the moment when you look outside, count the number of ducks you have, and wonder, "What the heck??" How do you decide which ones to get rid of……just the boys? My two original ducks are a boy and girl mallard, so can never get rid of him since they are a team and they were my first two. My other boy is another mallard that someone found with his mate and brought to me, I figured they would fly away and they never did, and my dogs just played with his mate to death, so he has to stay forever!!! A girlfriend gave me two ducklings that her hubby brought home, they are Rouens, and one of them just turned into a boy (he now looks like a boy, that is!)…so, how can I get rid of him, number one because he came with a female, they are a couple, and number two, because a girlfriend gave them to me. I am thinking it is easier to find them new homes when you get a bunch and weed out the boys, but still….makes me feel weid. The difference in price to get sexed ducks isn’t that big, so why doesn’t anyone pay more to get just girls??
    When you are incubating eggs, are you doing it to keep all of them? Why do you incubate anyway? Hobby? Love of it? Just cuz? I am completely interested in this question, because I want to do this, and can see it becoming a serious hobby.

    Eggs…..I really don’t like fresh chicken eggs, unless I am cooking with them. Do you guys really like them to eat? I heard that they make food more fluffy when you bake with them, so I can see collecting them for this reason, but I can also see myself being overrun with eggs if this little hobby (obsession) continues.
    Do any of you show your ducks? How did you get started? Why do you do it? What do you get out of it? Do you breed your ducks specifically to show? I am thinking this would be such a fun thing to get my kids into, but I have NO idea where to start, though I know it is easy to find out. I wouldn’t have a clue about knowing what to show. Not only that, how do you get your ducks to cooperate…..people talk about how different personalities are when it comes to friendliest birds…..do they need to be brave ducks that aren’t afraid of people? I just don’t get it. LOL

    I am loving this forum, but I think it is making me even crazier….There are over 650 PAGES of posts on this website, I am on page 57….I can’t make myself stop looking. I think I will make it to the last page in 2013, and by then, I will be SO overrun with ducks, I won’t have time to read the posts—especially if I become a single mother because my hubby has had enough! (Kidding….my hubby is great about these ducks, but I really think he is worrying about how many I talk about getting. It is so fun to have many different breeds, huh?) I LOVE reading the posts about each breed, love hearing why people love that particular breed, and the posts that have pictures showing off their babies…..I just love it all!

    [​IMG]
     
  2. GrannyCarol

    GrannyCarol Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 7, 2011
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    Well, first off, you have to understand that ducks are livestock. With livestock, you don't have "disposable pets", you have livestock you make pets out of. Very different attitude, I think it's necessary. That said, I love my ducks, I have a few that are pets and will stay until they die a natural death.

    When I raise baby ducks, I know that I will have too many drakes. I know by 5 weeks of age which ones are drakes and plan ahead for roast duckling. It's not easy for me at all, but I eat meat, I am responsible for the death of an animal when I do so. I figure its good for me to participate in all aspects of it.

    I eat duck eggs and love to cook with them, no problem there. If you don't like them, many people do, you might be able to sell some.

    When I hatch eggs, I am aware that I am likely to get too many ducklings for my situation. I am limited in space and the ability to care for more than a certain number during the winter. If I want one replacement duckling, I have to set several eggs, they don't all hatch and no duckling likes to be a loner either. I do usually try to sell or place them and to place occasional adults into good homes. There again though, I can't be completely sure the ducks I place won't be someone's dinner. I can only evaluate the person and send them where I believe they will be well cared for, whether they are eaten or not. They are livestock and, if I want one to be a pet, I keep it as a pet and don't expect someone else to feel as I do.
     
  3. bayyjayy

    bayyjayy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 5, 2011
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    Thank you for putting it in perspective for me, by stating that livestock and pets are two completely different things.....a light bulb kinda went off in my mind.
     
  4. animalpro24

    animalpro24 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 13, 2011
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    I love ducks!
    But I made a rule for myself that I can only have 10 ducks at a time.
     
  5. cat1994

    cat1994 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 12, 2010
    Southeast MO
    lol bayyjayy you sound really excited, you should definitely take your time so you don't get over whelmed

    When you get babies, and you get more males than you want, what the heck do you do with them? I raise call ducks so I sale them, they all go pretty fast so I don't have any left to eat

    How do you decide which ones to get rid of……just the boys? I pick the ones to keep by their quality b/c I breed the ones I keep

    When you are incubating eggs, are you doing it to keep all of them? no I only keep the ones that I think could help my calls improve in type

    Why do you incubate anyway? I do it b/c I LOVE it!!!! And it is a hobby and I sale the babies I only use natural incubation b/c I just love to watch a momma hen with her lil babies

    Do you guys really like to eat the eggs? I don't really eat very many duck eggs b/c I sit most of them under a broody hen, I do bake with them when I have them b/c they make the food really rich and tasty, I have never been over run with duck eggs but with chickens eggs its a whole other story so I sale them as free range eggs

    Do any of you show your ducks? Nope never really got in to that but call ducks are pretty, cute, and small so they would be pretty good to show

    I really love this forum too, it actually helps me keep my addiction to chickens and ducks under control b/c I can always get on here and read about other people’s birds and see the pics
     
  6. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I agree there is a difference between livestock and pets. My runners are my pets and my garden helpers - they have a job to do, but they are still my pets. And I paid an extra dollar each to get all girls. I had the same concerns you have - what to do with too many boys with a straight run?

    I still have some decisions to make. I started with eleven runners, and two have died. Next year I want to get three or four more - I plan to buy sexed females. I may get a drake some day, but right now, things are working well.

    My limit is fifteen runners. They are small, and a small flock is all I have brainspace and living space for.

    For some reason, I don't feel drawn to hatching eggs. I am very happy that others do. I've never seriously thought about showing the ducks at fairs or other competitions. I need them to control garden pests, make fertilizer and eggs. I also benefit greatly from their personalities - can't stay down around those ducks!

    I love their eggs - sunny side up, scrambled, poached, soft boiled, hard boiled, omelets, in corn bread, custard, you name it. Extras go to friends, neighbors, or food bank. There is always someone willing to take half a dozen or a dozen.
     

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